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The latest public health advice is to take a casual walk after dinner. This practice reaps more benefits than walking for an hour earlier in the day.
All it takes is 15 minutes of casual walking after eating dinner to aid digestion and prevent the blood sugar spikes that can lead to Type II Diabetes. This simple practice is so valuable because of its timing after the evening meal.
Lowers blood sugar
About 15 minutes after a meal, the sugar in our bloodstream starts to rise. The movement of walking puts demand on the muscles, which in turn uses the sugar in the blood and lowers blood sugar.
We have reported in previous blogs on the dangers of consistent high blood sugar, which is one of the aspects of Type II Diabetes. These dangers include damage to the arteries, nerves and organs.
Two factors that can help reduce blood sugar after a meal are eating healthy fats as part of the meal and walking after the meals. The combination of these makes for the best results. Since most people already include fats in their meals, adding the walk often can produce the greatest benefits. If it is bitter cold or icy underfoot, or terribly hot and humid, walking in place indoors can also provide the benefits.
Aids in digestion
Taking a 15-minute walk after all meals also has been shown to aid digestion. Studies on different methods of aiding in digestion have found that the casual walk can speed up the digestion process by moving food through the stomach into the colon or small intestine in a shorter amount of time.
Walking earlier in the day has many health benefits, so you should continue that activity. But remember that you achieve twice the benefit if you add the after-dinner movement to your daily routine.